(OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water

Do you have a question? Post it now! No Registration Necessary

Translate This Thread From English to

Threaded View
Off topic, but it has to so with science....

When I was young, my father had a container of some sort of powder,
which was supposed to be added to water, and then it formed a gas that
burned as a sort of flashlight, used during World War 2.  

That had me fascinated, and my father told me not to touch it. Of course
that just made me want to play with it even more. I remember putting
about a teaspoon of it into a pill bottle, taking it out into the woods
and dumping it into a small puddle of water, expecting a huge explosion
as I ran away from it. Absolutely NOTHING happened...... (very
disappointing).

For some reason, I recalled this not long ago, and I'd like to read up
on the stuff on Wikipedia or something. But I can not remember the name
of it. The word "carbide" comes to mind, but that is not it, thats what
they use on saw blades.

Does anyone know the name of this stuff?  


Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 20/02/2019 1:14 pm, snipped-for-privacy@myshop.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it
Calcium carbide if I remember correctly, for explosions one put some  
water in a plastic bottle added some of the carbide and quickly screwed  
on the top followed by a rapid retreat to a safe distance !!
Used in earlier days in bicycle and motor cycle headlights etc.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 20/2/19 4:20 pm, Rheilly Phoull wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

Yes - it generates acetylene gas.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On Wednesday, February 20, 2019 at 4:22:33 PM UTC+11, Clifford Heath wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

And acetylene gas is thermodynamically unstable.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acetylene

"Consequently, acetylene, if initiated by intense heat or a shockwave, can decompose explosively if the absolute pressure of the gas exceeds about 200 kilopascals (29 psi)."

--  
Bill Sloman, Sydney

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 20/02/19 06:41, snipped-for-privacy@ieee.org wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it
 >
Quoted text here. Click to load it

As a schoolkid I went to a Royal Institution lecture (yes,
in /that/ lecture theatre), where there were demos of
detonating stoichiometric mixtures of various gases at RTP.

That culminated in acetylene plus oxygen, and was most
impressive. The container (a glass milk bottle) was
turned to dust, and more than one of the protective
blast reduction layers around that suffered significant
damage.



Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
Quoted text here. Click to load it


That would be fun with torch tanks.

Greg

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
gregz wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

That's why it's dissolved in acetone rather than simply compressed.

Jeroen Belleman

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 02/19/2019 09:14 PM, snipped-for-privacy@myshop.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

Calcium carbide. I have a vintage "Big Bang" cannon. a July 4th toy,  
that uses it.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water

Quoted text here. Click to load it

I had one too.  And they still make the cannons, Big Bang Cannons.
We would buy the Carbide from the camping store, and crush the rocks
into a powder.

Cheers

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On Wednesday, 20 February 2019 06:54:03 UTC+1, rabit  wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

In the East of the Netherlands it is still a tradition to use a carbide in a milk churn as a cannon on Newyears eve.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 20/02/2019 05:14, snipped-for-privacy@myshop.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it




Calcium Carbide:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carbide_lamp

Used to be used for vehicle lighting a century ago give or take.

--  
Email does not work

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 20/02/2019 10:11, Tim Watts wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it


I still have one - along with a couple of safer Davy miners lamps.

--  
Regards,
Martin Brown

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 2/19/2019 11:14 PM, snipped-for-privacy@myshop.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it
Calcium carbide was widely used in the mines in SE Oklahoma,
and probably everyplace else where there was mining.  The
miners wore hats with a place to clip the carbide light on
the front.  The light came in 2 pieces.  The bottom was filled
with carbide and the top with water.  An adjustable valve allowed
the water to drip on the carbide and produce acetylene.  This was
burned in front of a reflector.  See:  
http://americanhistory.si.edu/collections/object-groups/mining-lights-and-hats/carbide-lamps .

We always had one.  My father was a miner when he met my mother and
we lived in a mining area.

Bill

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 2/20/2019 8:25 AM, Bill Gill wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

Quoted text here. Click to load it




Quoted text here. Click to load it

Quoted text here. Click to load it

My father had one. I thought it was magic. He used it for night hunting  
back in the '40s in Louisiana. He took me with him and I loved it. It  
was before hunting licenses were required.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 2/19/2019 11:14 PM, snipped-for-privacy@myshop.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

  I have a canister from WWII that has a white rock like substance.
When mixed with water it out gases Hydrogen, It was used to fill large  
balloons.  My boss singed his eyebrows when we filled a garbage bag
with hydrogen and lit it. It had a low frequency boom.
                                 Mikek

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water

Quoted text here. Click to load it

Calcium Carbide.

Re: (OT) Chemical used to make flame during WW2 by adding to water
On 2/21/2019 9:12 PM, snipped-for-privacy@notreal.com wrote:
Quoted text here. Click to load it

  Not sure if you were responding to me, but I think the chemical in the  
WWII canister is Calcium Hydride. It reacts with water and releases  
Hydrogen.
Quoted text here. Click to load it

                               Mikek


Site Timeline